Sunday, January 20, 2013

The Fault in Our Stars, by John Green

Wow. Just wow.

Here's a book that I was just too damn cheap to buy full price, even though the cover blurb grabbed me when I first came across it. So, I waited my turn at the library, and finally got lucky when the audio version was added to the collection (still haven't gotten my call for the hard copy.) This was no problem for me, as I enjoy audio versions, both when driving or for listening to when I'm doing tasks around the house. For this book, though, I invented tasks as an excuse to listen. When those ran out, I just sat like a lump and followed Hazel and Gus through their days.

This is a book that reaches out and grabs your heart from the get-go. Green has created powerful characters, brought us into their everyday world, and made it vibrant, heart-wrenching, and beautiful. This is not always an easy task, for there's very little about cancer that is beautiful. But there is a great deal that is glorious in the two young people in this story. Synopses abound. Go read one if you wish, but it cannot adequately prepare for how engaging this story is.

A bonus to the audio version is that there is an interview with Green. I really appreciated his insights on the story, writing, life with cancer, and more. I also found out that he has done an audio version of the book, primarily for the fans of his vlog, who wanted to hear his inflections to the story. The audio version I listened to was superb, and as Green said, he was much happier to hear Hazel say, "you're so hot" in a female voice than in his lovely baritone.

Oddly enough, while reading this, I also read of Neil Gaiman's participation in  An Evening of Awesome at Carnegie Hall presented last week by Hank and John Green.Watch the video, and you'll get to hear the stars of The Lizzie Bennet Diaries (which also involves Hank Green) read the wonderful section in the museum (won't say more because of spoilers.)

10 out of 5 stars. Yes, I liked it.

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